Why Homeschool?

benefits of homeschooling

"You homeschool? But, why?"

We began homeschooling to provide an individualised learning approach for our eldest son. But the list of reasons we continue to homeschool is continually growing.

When people ask me this question I usually use a reason that they can relate to from their own experience. If it's a stranger I say something like "I never imagined doing something like this but it works really well for our family". 

Strangers simply don't need us to provide a ten minute lecture on why homeschooling is awesome and we certainly don't need to justify our decision to everyone who asks.

Here is our homeschooling mission statement which sums up the choice for our family!


Why do I homeschool?
  • To protect, nurture, and encourage my children's curiosity, imagination, and love of learning
My boys have always shown a desire to learn. They are genuinely interested in the world around them and ask lots of questions. My eldest son talked his teachers ear off at school because he wanted to know more about EVERYTHING. She had to ask him (kindly) to stop asking so many questions because it was disrupting the class.

My other son has a vivid imagination. He's a daydreamer and a thinker. He (much like me) needs freedom to explore his own thoughts and opportunities to be creative. The school structure and expectation is really no place for a child with a big imagination and creative tendencies as it is rigid and restrictive. I find he focuses and learns better when structured learning is partnered with plenty of time to play, explore, dream and just be himself.

Why do I homeschool?
  • To create a warm, safe learning environment to suit my children's interests and changing needs
Homeschooling means I can let my children guide their learning through their interests. When I choose what area we will be working on in science for example, I let them guide the topic. Both boys were fascinated with the moon so we decided to look at the solar system. It was easy to teach them because they wanted to learn and devoured every book and website I could offer them.

Why do I homeschool?
  • To build strong character in my children believing that good character is more important than academic success
Academic success is important to me because it's enabled me to pursue a career I'm passionate about. But building strong character is equally, if not more important and I need to be reminded of this. I want my children to grow up to embrace values of kindness, integrity, compassion, love, grace, mercy and a genuine love and respect for the world they live in and the people around them. What's the point of my son becoming a doctor is he's judgemental and arrogant? I want more for my kids than just academic success. I want them to grow to be good people. 

Some parents argue that children are in fact, taught values in public schools. But they are confused with behavior management. It's one thing to tell a child that bullying is wrong but another to teach them why it's wrong and help them form a belief system that enables them to choose not to bully. Values begin at home. I often found my son would come home from school loud, rude and disrespectful and I was faced with the exhausting task of re-teaching him manners and respect for others. I just couldn't compete with the negative influence of school as he spent 30 hours of his week there away from the positive influence of home.

Why do I homeschool?
  • To protect my children from negative influences by providing an environment where they are encouraged to embrace and celebrate their God-given uniqueness
School is not the real world. It's a world in it's own and often times, not a very nice one. I used to be very firm about not wanting my children in a Christian school (despite being a strong Christian) because I didn't want them to grow up sheltered from the real world. I wanted them to learn to relate to people of all different cultures and backgrounds. Unfortunately, the reality wasn't as appealing as the idea. I found that even young children become so desperate to fit in that they deny themselves and their own interests to be part of a group. 

Homeschooling allows my kids to be themselves. No one thinks their questions are dumb. No one teases them because they like maths. No one excludes them or bullies them. They are able to embrace and celebrate their God-given uniqueness - not deny it to fit in with the group.

Why do I homeschool?
  • To empower my children with the knowledge that they are created by God and God has a plan and purpose for their life
We are a Christian family. We have a personal relationship with Jesus and see this relationship as central to everything in life. It is through this relationship that we obtain a sense of meaning and purpose for our lives and know that we are an important piece (because all pieces are important!) in a beautiful picture that God will ultimately complete. I want to impart this to my children. I want them to know that God created them, he loves them and their life's purpose is grounded in the knowledge of the person of Jesus and his sacrifice for them.

Why do I homeschool? 
  • To live joyfully and peacefully together, encouraging and uplifting one another with both words and actions
I have to highlight joyfully and peacefully because these don't come naturally to me! I need a constant reminder to be encouraging with my words to encourage a culture of encouragement in my home. I also know that my children will learn to treat others through the way I treat them and they see me treat others.

Why do I homeschool?
  • To impart a heart-felt desire to contribute meaningfully to the world
The common misconception about mainstream education is that it prepares children for the world.

The original purpose of schools in the early 19th century was to create workers for industrialism and schools are still very much stuck in this idea. Education isn't just about getting a job and having a job doesn't necessarily mean you've done your duty to society (or the world). I want to teach my kids that there are lots of ways we contribute to the world and one of those ways is in our relationships with people, living in a community and being involved in other parts of the world (through philanthropy and missions).


Train up a child in the way he should go - and when he is old he will not depart from it 
 Proverbs 22:6

Comments

  1. Lovely way of stating your reasons to homeschool. I will do the same.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love this. So far its the best description of WHY one homeschools. Our reasons are much the same. Thank you for sharing. I'll be reading this again, so it sinks in :-) going to enjoy your blog i think :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is a really inspiring and motivating list. I will refer back to it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Just found this blog. So lovely.

    "I want them to know that God created them, he loves them and their life's purpose is grounded in the knowledge of the person of Jesus and his sacrifice for them"

    Love it!

    ReplyDelete

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